Sleeve Plackets:The Easiest Way. Make an Elastic Cuff Instead.

The traditional basic blouse has so many sewing challenges for the newbie why add another?  Current fashions are silky and full so why not just put in an elastic band at the cuff and avoid both buttoned cuff and sleeve vent in one fell swoop.  This is not appropriate for a crisp cotton but a soft full design of drapey fabric will accomodate a redesign at the cuff.   A simple elastic cuff chops off quite a lot of time and with one less tricky place to mess up you have less sewing stress.   

There are several ways to alter the pattern to allow for the simpler elastic cuff.  Here are some scenarios.

1: The Pattern offers different cuff applications. 

 Hope the pattern offers the elastic option such as Project Runway Simplicity Pattern 2807.  Just take them up on it.

2: The Pattern Doesn’t Offer Different Cuff Styles

But the Sleeve is Full and You Simply Add an Elastic Cuff.

2) Take the current sleeve, forget the cuff, and simply place in a folded elastic band.  This is best done if the sleeve pattern is the same width at the cuff as it is at the armhole.  That looks like this.

Make sure sleeve width is the same at armscye and cuff. Add some length back in to make up for lost cuff and turn under with elastic.

 This will give you a narrower, more restrained, fullness. That might not be enough for you.

  3: The Sleeve Pattern is Not Full Enough for the Amount of Frouf You Desire

3)You are forced to alter the sleeve pattern itself to make it froufy enough at the cuff.  Here are some possibilities. The first one is the basic alteration.  The second idea makes for a very dramatic sleeve, but one that may flop down into your coffee.  Consider where you are going to be wearing the blouse.

The simplest alteration to add fullness to the cuff. Again if you might want to add some length for wearing ease.

Add fullness only to bottom for bell-shaped sleeve.

****One Caveat:  Measure the Sleeve Length****

When you take away the cuff you are taking away some of the sleeve length.  Additionally the gathered cuff will need some extra length in order to pouf out.  Remember to measure the sleeve length and add some length back in.  I would add back the cuff width at the very least with probably 2-4 inches extra depending on how much extra fullness I wanted.  Best to get out a piece of muslin and make a practice sleeve to get it right in the fashion fabric.  

Next Post: Thursday, February 25, 2010; Sleeve Plackets: The Mock Vent


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